Philips just announced a 21:9 display promising to “[let] you enjoy movies as you would in the cinema and just as the director intended.” This seems interesting, but none of the math works out here. According to their press release:
Cinema 21:9 boasts a 56” screen that is shaped in the 21:9 aspect ratio, so movies in the 2.39:1 format completely fill the screen – exactly as you experience at the cinema.
Now, I’ve never seen a 2.39:1 film, I’ve seen 1.33, 1.66, 1.78, 1.85, 2:1, and 2.35 (if you want to go back to Cinemascope, then also 2.66). More than that, 21:9 actually comes out to 2.33, not 2.39. Though I’d guess they were rounding since 2.35 really equates to 21.15:9.
Now, while I’m a gadget-geek and this definitely piques my interest, I really have to doubt the appeal of a 2.35 (or 2.39 or 2.33, whatever it ends up being) screen. While it is clearly aimed at the “movie lovers,” how will people feel about watching HD content pillar-boxed? What about all the content that still is 4:3? And moreover, since there is no HD standard that supports a native 2.35:1 aspect, will the device simply scale up and crop the stream (is the display actually 1920×817)? I have a feeling the display really doesn’t offer increased resolution, just a large, cropped 1080p display.
Call me a nay-sayer, but I just don’t see this catching on.